stone-pathThere are many individuals, organizations and communities—both in the US and abroad—who are working for social transformation from a basis in compassionate spirituality and honoring the cultural traditions and histories of people of color.  Here are a list of some of the groups and initiatives that excite us most.

Alternate R.O.O.T.S. (Atlanta, GA.) is an organization whose mission is to support the creation and presentation of original art, which is rooted in a particular community of place, tradition or spirit. The programs and services address concerns in the areas of social and economic justice and the protection of the natural world. Link

Art for Social Change explores the potential for personal transformation and social change intrinsic to the creative process of making art. Link

Art from Ashes (AfA) exists to empower struggling youth by providing creative programs that facilitate health and hope through expression, connection, and transformation.

AfA’s art programs allow marginalized youth to tell their stories through poetry and spoken word (Phoenix Rising); visual and tactile art (Drawing on Air); and drama and creative play (Casting Shadows) in a safe space with caring adults and community artists. AfA’s nationally-recognized, award-winning curriculum is designed to facilitate personal transformation through the power of artistic expression.  Link

The Social and Public Art Resource Center is committed to socially responsible art making by focusing on public art that includes the multiple perspectives of the people who inhabit public space. Link

Founded by Bernice Johnson Reagon, Sweet Honey in the Rock is an African American female a cappela ensemble with deep musical roots in the sacred music of the black church, spirituals, hymns, gospels as well as jazz. Link

The Positive Youth Foundation was created to promote awareness through youth-oriented music and culture in order to educate and foster dialogue within the realms of youth subcultures concerning bigotry and all related issues. Link

Lenny Foster’s photographs honor and reveal the healing power of the spirit. Link

Daniel Minter works in the same media used by many generations of southern African-American artists — carving and painting on wood, his art reflects the beauty, richness and spirit of his heritage. Link

The Spirituals Project is a broad-based initiative to explore the many, varied dimensions of African American spirituals as art form, tradition and tool; and to invite all people to experience the joy and power of this dynamic music and gift from African Americans to the world. Link

Also, see the educational presentation website of the Spirituals Project, which is designed for use by educators, teachers, musicians, artists and others who are interested in learning about the history and ongoing cultural influences of the spirituals. Link

The mission of Stone Circles is to sustain activists and strengthen the work of justice through spiritual practice and principles. Link

The official website of the Government of Tibet in Exile has extensive information on Tibetan Buddhism. Link

urbanPEACE bridges the practice of spirit and the promise of social transformation by infusing meaningful meditation and awareness practices adapted from traditional wisdom teachings into a range of under-served, transcultural, widely diversified, and sometimes chaotic, or “urban” settings. Link

Sojourners, Link, is a Christian ministry whose mission is to proclaim and practice the biblical call to integrate spiritual renewal and social justice. Their work includes publishing a magazine and sponsoring a variety of public programs to bring people together across denominational lines for compassionate social change organizing.

The National Conference for Community and Justice, founded in 1927 as the National Conference of Christians and Jews, is a human relations organization dedicated to fighting bias, bigotry and racism in America. NCCJ promotes understanding and respect among all races, religions and cultures through advocacy, conflict resolution and education. Link

The Beloved Community Center of Greensboro Inc strives to steer our city away from chaos and toward a new community based on economic and racial justice using a Village Concept where all family, social, political, religious, educational and economic relations affirm the dignity, worth and potential of everyone. Link

The Center for the Healing of Racism’s mission is to serve as a catalyst for the healing of racism through the education and empowerment of individuals. Link

The Congress of Racial Equality is a civil rights group that aims to bring about equality for all people regardless of race, creed, sex, age, disability, sexual orientation, religion or ethnic background. In pursuing its aim, CORE seeks to identify and expose acts of discrimination in the public and private sectors of society. The national headquarters of CORE is located in New York City. Link

The National Association for the Advancement of Colored People is the USA’s oldest and largest anti-discrimination membership organization. It employs litigation, mobilization and coalition to achieve its goals and has a long and illustrious history of advocating for the expansion of democracy in America. Link

Change is a project of the Tides Center with a mission of promoting democratic ideals through the removal of barriers that sustain racial and ethnic disparities. Link

The People’s Institute for Survival and Beyond
This is a multi-racial anti-racist network of veteran organizers and educators dedicated to building a movement for justice by ending racism and other forms of institutionalized oppression. Link

James and Grace Lee Boggs Center to Nurture Community Leadership, Detroit.
The organization’s activities are designed to help community activists develop themselves into visionary leaders and critical thinkers. Link

The Southern Christian Leadership Conference With Martin Luther King, Jr at its helm, and many others such as Andrew Young, Ralph Abernathy and C.T. Vivian among its officers, SCLC was one of the major organizations of the southern freedom movement. It continues to work toward human rights in the United States and internationally. Link

Environmental Justice/ Environmental racism
The African American Environmental Association is dedicated to protecting the environment, enhancing the human ecology, and working to ensure the efficient use of natural resources. It provides an opportunity for minorities to participate in the environmental movement. The organization resolves environmental racism and injustice issues through the application of practical environmental solutions. Link

The Alternative for Community and Environment is based in Roxbury, Massachusetts and works in partnership with low income communities and communities of color to achieve environmental justice. Link

The Asian Pacific Environmental Network seeks to empower low-income Asian Pacific Islander communities to achieve environmental and social justice. Link

Xavier University of Louisiana, Deep South Center for Environmental Justice works for universal protection from nuclear testing, extraction, production, and disposal of toxic wastes, poisons, and nuclear testing that threaten the fundamental right to clean air, land, water and food. The center has developed and embraced a model for community partnership that is called “communiversity.” The model emphasizes a collaborative management or partnership between universities and communities. Link

The Environmental Justice Foundation trains, equips and supports communities and organizations that are directly affected by environmental abuses.

The Indigenous Environmental Network is an alliance of grassroots indigenous peoples whose mission is to protect the sacredness of mother earth from contamination and exploitation by strengthening, maintaining and respecting the traditional teachings and natural laws. Link

The Green Belt Movement is a grassroots non-governmental organization based in Kenya that focuses on environmental conservation, community development and capacity building. The goal is to create a society of people who consciously work for the improvement of their environment, and a greener, cleaner Kenya. Link

Conflict Resolution and Peace

The Conflict Center (Denver).  The Conflict Center teaches communication skills, consequences, negotiation, anger management classes, conflict management, and assertiveness. Participants learn to handle daily hassles and conflict effectively, to take concepts and ideas into the real world and translate them into productive, successful, nonviolent actions and behaviors.  Link

The American Friends Service Committee is an organization that works on issues of peace and justice based on the Quaker religious tradition. Link

The Boston Research Center for the 21st Century  (changed its name to The Ikeda Center in 2009) is an international peace institute that envisions a worldwide network of global citizens developing cultures of peace through dialogue and understanding. We believe that the best hope for the realization of this vision is through the active cultivation of an inclusive sense of community, locally and globally. Link

Since 1993, The Center has been engaging diverse scholars, activists, and social innovators in the search for the ideas and solutions that will assist in the peaceful evolution of humanity.

The Fellowship of Reconciliation is an interfaith organization that is committed to active nonviolence as a personally transforming way of life and as well as a means of radical social change. Link

Peace Brigade International is non-governmental organization (NGO) which protects human rights and promotes nonviolent transformation of conflicts. Link

Peace Jam provides an opportunity for today’s youth to have personal contact with Nobel Prize winners. The organization creates a meaningful forum in which young people can study the lives of recognized peacemakers and then dialogue about them and practice their own fresh approaches. Link

SpiritHouse (Atlanta) The SpiritHouse Project uses the arts, research, education, action, and spirituality to bring diverse peoples together to work for racial, economic, and social justice, as well as for spiritual maturity.  Link

The Boston Healing Landscape Project focuses on intersections of culture, religious worldviews, and different understandings of illness and healing in the African Diaspora communities of Boston. Link

The Center for Spirituality and Healing is located at the University of Minnesota and is a nationally recognized leader in integrative medicine, bringing together biomedical, complementary, cross-cultural and spiritual care. Link

The Center for Traditional Medicine: Traditional Arts and Sciences and Fourth World Studies supports research, education and clinical treatment that draws from universal knowledge and traditional systems of indigenous healing. Link

The Association for the Promotion of Traditional Medicine promotes and protects traditional medicine and indigenous science in Africa. PROMETRA also works to increase dialogue among western physicians and traditionally trained healers. Link

AZTREC, the Association of Zimbabwe Traditional Environmental Conservationists, is a coalition of village chiefs, spirit mediums and war veterans involved in the conservation of ecological resources in Zimbabwe. Link

CECIK, the Center for Cosmo-vision and Indigenous Knowledge in Ghana, works toward sustainable rural community development from the perspective of indigenous world views. Link

The Foundation for Revitalization of Local Health Traditions in India is a non-governmental organization dedicated to revitalizing India’s rich and diverse indigenous health traditions.

The Indigenous Knowledge Program Initiative of the World Bank (Africa Region)
aims move indigenous/traditional knowledge into mainstream development activities and to optimize the benefits of development assistance to the poor. Link

World Council of Elders
This is a global educational organization dedicated to preserving and sharing traditional indigenous wisdom toward global healing and peace. Link